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  • Writer's pictureFlow Australia

Uluru resort could hit the market as owners mull sale

The Indigenous corporation that owns Ayers Rock Resort says it is exploring ownership options for the only tourist accommodation at Uluru.

The Indigenous Land and Sea Corporation is exploring options for the Ayers Rock Resort, the only place for tourists to stay when they visit Uluru. 

The resort, operated by the corporation's subsidiary Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia, has been a controversial topic since its purchase for more than $300 million in 2010.

Shortly afterwards it was revalued at $200 million and questions have been repeatedly raised about due diligence and governance issues around the board's original decision to buy the resort.

In 2016 the federal government stepped in with a $65 million government loan, to help refinance the debt.

On Thursday the Indigenous corporation announced it had begun an assessment exploring potential alternative ownership options for the operations at Ayers Rock Resort.

ILSC chief executive Joe Morrison said they would work in partnership with the local Anangu community to explore options for the resort and returning land at Yulara.

"We are committed to getting this right and achieving a positive outcome with Indigenous benefit front of mind," he said.

"At this stage, no decision has been made about who to divest the land to and no decision has been made about the disposal of the operations."

Voyages chief executive Matt Cameron-Smith said it was business at usual at the resort, as tourism rebounds toward pre COVID-19 levels.

"We are fully focused on continuing to provide our guests with an immersive Australian Indigenous cultural experience," he said.

The ILSC said the assessment process will involve consultation and engagement with the local First Nations peoples to "understand their aspirations and in particular who should benefit from the land divestment process and how those benefits are to flow".

Mossman Gorge Cultural Centre, also owned by Voyages, is not part of the review.


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